Kannada marriages are the marriages that are performed in the state of Karnataka. Kannada marriages almost resembles the traditional Hindu marriages. However they differ slightly in customs and traditions according to the region they conducted in. The marriage celebration facilitates the opportunity to the both side families and relatives to meet and enjoy the occasion. Before the marriage ceremony to take place both the prospective bride and groom’s parents must approve the pairing of this couple before anything can progress as a part of the marriage ritual.
One of the most important features of the Kannada marriage is the practice of lot of rituals that are performed before, during and after marriage ceremony. The rituals performed in the Kannada marriage ceremony are simple and allow the family members to have a good time together in the occasion.
In the earlier days boy and girl used to see each other only during the marriage because everything was decided by the elders of the family. The final decision was made by the elders considering the family cast, religion, status, family background. Later the families agreed that the consent of the boy and the girl before marriage is important. Finally it became a formal to make a girl and boy to see each other and decide on the marriage only upon their opinions. Once the girl and boy agreed to marry each other then both families meet to perform the further rituals.
The pre marriage rituals commence with the Naandi custom, it is performed by the the bride and groom in their houses individually respectively. It is performed to ensure the marriages take place without any interruption. The Kaashi Yatra tradition follows this celebration. It is an interesting ritual where the groom pretends to leave for Kaashi as he is devoid of a suitable bride. He has been stopped by his maternal uncle by showing the bride he has chosen for him. Just before the groom leaves for the bride’s vllag, all the marriage items are places in front of the Lord to seek the blessings. This is named as Dev karya ceremony. After this ceremony both the bride and the groom are applied turmeric paste.
On the marriage day the first ritual that take place at the marriage mandap is Mandap Puja, according to which the marriage mandap and the marriage hall where the marriage to to be take place are purified. Once this is completed the bride’s father worships the groom by washing his feet. This is called as Var puja. This is followed by the bride’s entry to the mandap, after that both bride and groom exchange the garlands on the chant of the holy mantras. This is followed by the ritual where the bride’s parents give away her daughter to the groom by placing the coconut and betel over their hands and pouring some holy water by chanting some holy mantras. Then the groom ties the mangalsutra ( thread with holy symbol of their traditional gold item ) around the bride’s neck. After this, Saptapadi ceremony where the newly wed couple takes seven rounds around the sacred fire.
After the marriage ceremony, the bride has been taken to her in laws home for the first time. When she arrives the home she is given a warm welcome by her in-laws. This process is takes place with a vessel filled with rice is kept at the entrance of the house just near by the door space and she is asked to knock it inside the home with her right foot. This symbolizes that the bride takes the home a wealthy and joyful success to her new home. After this, the bride enters the house and this is called as Griha Prahesh. After this the name change ceremony takes place where the groom decides a name for his wife and he then inscribes it with a ring on a place which is filled with rice.
On the second day after the marriage, the bride’s parents visit the newly wed couple at the groom’s house. With the permission of the groom’s parents they take the couple to their home along with themselves. The couple stays there for some days and the groom’s family goes to the bride’s home and take the couple back. Finally the reception party concludes the marriage ceremony, which is organized in a banquet hall by the groom’s family, the primary aim of this reception party is the introduction of the bride, enjoyment and relishing mouth watering delicacies. After this ceremony the couple will remain at the groom’s house and starts their new life.